Contemporary Romance: BREAKING UP WITH BARRETT

by Katy Regnery

Contemporary Romance: BREAKING UP WITH BARRETT, The English Brothers #1.

Breaking Up with Barrett is the first of six books about the Philadelphia-based, wildly-handsome English brothers who are all on the look-out for love.

(Except Alex. He's a womanizing manwhore. And maybe Stratton, because he's wicked hot, but super awkward around girls.)

Barrett English, aka "the Shark," is the fair-haired, first-born of the English brothers, and the CEO of the oldest, most prestigious investment banking firm in Philadelphia. He rules the boardroom with an iron fist, refusing to take no for an answer and always getting his way.

Emily Edwards, a first-year doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania, grew up in the gatehouse on the outskirts of Barrett's childhood estate. The daughter of his family's gardener and housekeeper, she was always looking through the window of privilege, but forced to remember her place at the very periphery of the kingdom.

When business partners suggest that a fiancee might soften Barrett's image over business dinners, he approaches Emily for the "job" of fiancee. And while love wasn't necessarily on Barrett's radar, he begins to realize that Emily always has been. But will his take-no-prisoners boardroom tactics work on the heart of the woman he loves?

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Emily, the gardener’s daughter, has known Barrett “The Shark” English her entire life. She’s pretending to be his fake fiancee, accompanying him for business dinners, etc. Til one night, she decides to poke the shark, and gets much more than she bargains for. She breaks up with him, but he’s not letting her go so easily….

The Good
I couldn’t resist the description - it had a very Sabrina-esque vibe to it, if Sabrina had fallen for Linus from the beginning, instead of David. I was not disappointed. At all. Emily and Barrett are destined for each other and it is laid out for the reader from the very first page. Barrett’s protective love for Emily is just what I love reading about.

Their chemistry is compelling and the anticipation for their love scenes builds steadily throughout the story - there really is something to be said for building that tension...when it finally happens, it’s satisfying for the reader and the characters lol.

The best part of reading this was a refreshing maturity from a relatively young characters - when the climax of the story occurs, Emily handles herself in a composed and intelligent fashion, which was a pleasant surprise.. Actually, most of the characters seemed grounded and have believable emotional reactions, , as opposed to the overly dramatic actions I’m accustomed to rolling my eyes about.

This is part of a series, but it is not a cliffhanger and each brother will get his own book.

The Minor Quibbles
I can see where some folks may have an issue with the age difference (at the start of this story Emily’s 24 and Barrett’s 32), if only because of certain scenes where Barrett clearly loves her when she’s in her teen years. I think it just adds to their history, but some may not feel comfortable with that.

Barrett’s main deception seemed a bit shortsighted for a character portrayed as a smart businessman. But it didn’t affect my ultimate enjoyment. The class issue is almost background, barely a consideration.

The Bottom Line
I really, really enjoyed this book and definitely recommend it. I’m looking forward to reading about the other brothers. I would happily read more of Ms. Regnery’s books.

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Apr 25, 2015
by: Psymon H

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